(This is an updated recipe from November 2012. It continues to me a favorite of mine and felt it needed a better picture and some more time in the limelight:)
I loved the Mexican rice and beans that I made a while ago and decided to try it again, but with barley instead. This is seriously so so easy to put together and it tastes delicious. Lately, I’ve been loving barley because of the chewy texture and it is puffier than rice. I also decided to throw in a can of chicken in there and make this as a casserole-type of dinner instead of as a side dish. I served mine with a dollop of sour cream, cheese and avocados! Yum. This is my go-to recipe when my husband is going to be gone and I still want a warm dinner.
Makes 4-6 servings
1 (10 oz) canned chicken breast, in water (drained), optional (or you can use some chicken from this awesome recipe)
1 or 2 (14 oz) can of black beans, rinsed and drained (or you can make black beans from scratch…use about 1 cup of dried black beans and plenty of water in your slow cooker. cook on low for 8-10 hours)
3/4 cup pearl barley (not the quick cooking kind…I find mine in the bulk section of the grocery store)
1 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup salsa or picante sauce (plus more, if needed)
1 bay leaf
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garlic salt
Salt and pepper
Toppings: sliced avocados, sour cream and grated cheese (optional)
1. Place chicken, beans, rice, water, salsa, bay leaf, cumin, and garlic salt in the slow cooker.
2. Cover and cook on LOW for 3-5 hours, or until barley is cooked and tender.
3. Add in salt and pepper to taste and lime juice to taste. Add in additional salsa to brighten it up, if needed. Top with desired toppings.